It’s been a little while since the last sneak peek of our place. Today, let’s explore the dining room!
This view is from the living room looking through the dining room and into the family room beyond. It’s nice to be able to see through from one room to another because this is an old house with many separated rooms, but it still feels open and connected.
Well there’s certainly a lot of wood to work with! The floors are that medium honey tone that has seems to have gone out of fashion (everyone wants ebony or bleached) but with a hint of red, so they’re not exactly blonde. The wooden wainscotting is in pristine condition, I’m telling you, with not a spot of paint and as smooth as a baby’s bottom.
You may disagree with me, but I’m actually into that chandelier. It’s kind of that colonial, Williamsburg shape in old brass and since I’m so inspired by the Northeastern States like Maine, I feel like it’s worth saving. It could do with some shades though. But what kind?
And there’s a swingy door!!! I’m going to sound like a twelve-year-old, but that swinging door into the dining room may have been one of the key selling features for me! It’s just like the ones on classic sitcoms like Full House and Who’s The Boss and I LOVE it. It adds to the formality of the old house (we wouldn’t want to be able to see the mess in the kitchen from our dinner party, would we?) and leads to a little hallway that divides the front entrance from the kitchen and leads to a side door. Cool eh? I picture bursting through this door with many a birthday cake singing, “Happy Birthday to yoooooou!”
Another view – sorry, kind of darkish, into the family room. You can see the walls are old, textured plaster. Not my favourite, but I guess they were going for that ye olde English thing which I can appreciate. The walls curve up into the ceiling so you can’t really paint the walls one colour and the ceiling another. One colour it is.
And finally, Sara and I found these fantastic french doors covered in dirt and grime in the basement. They came from the entrance between the dining and living room and had been down there for 30 or more years! They were in perfect shape except for the dirt and we decided to bring them home to their rightful place.
The wood paneling in this room really is handsome and rich, and I was not sure if I wanted to paint it or not. Everyone at the magazine said I should, but I wasn’t sold on the idea. There was part of me that feared that if we did paint it all white, the house would look too new or lose some of it’s soul or something. I was on the hunt for inspirational images of houses that kept some of the wood instead of painting it all out.
What would you have done?
Well there you have it – the dining room! A perfect place to hold family dinners, Christmas, Thanksgiving, Birthdays, but also a perfect place to spread out the newspaper with a bowl of cereal. The trick would be freshening this room up and maintaining the warmth at the same time. I didn’t want it to feel like a stuffy old library or manor. Can’t wait to show what’s been done since then…